Friday, January 18, 2013




Corpostrat, one of the few Centre Stage events of Cognizance 2010, is the flag ship event of the Department of Management Studies, IIT Roorkee. This is not just another B-Plan Contest that we are now used to seeing in almost every college event. This aims to get the best out of the contestants’ both idea wise and also tests their marketing, strategy and decision making skills.

Corpostrat invited ideas and abstracts to address the growing problem of the digital divide. As many as 70 entries were received of which 8 teams were selected to participate in the first round on 26th March, 2010. Teams from BITS-Pilani, IIFT Delhi, IIFT Kolkata, NMIMS Mumbai, DCE, MIT Manipal etc were among the final 8. The first round was the Presentation round where the participants were given 20 minutes to present their ideas and 10 minutes for the Q&A round. The judges for the event included Prof. Vinay Sharma, DoMS, IITR, Prof. Shishir Sinha, Dept. of Chemical Engineering., IITR, Prof. M.K.Barua, DoMS, IITR, and two other judges from Onida India. The ideas presented were innovative, ground-breaking and impressive to say the least. Ideas varied from providing Tourist Kiosks at select locations to Building movable bridges on rivers to opening Innovative online Music Services. It obviously was a tough event to judge as was seen by the small margins of separation between the winners and the rest. But eventually 5 teams were selected who then entered the final round of Corpostrat.

The final round of Corpostrat was where participants had to fight it out in the open, a real world simulation of strategy and skills. Teams were given a budget of 100 INR each with which they had to make any sort of purchases and then make stuff out of the same and then try and sell them back! Different teams had different ideas; one team introduced gambling games, card games etc whereas another had mini-bowling and ring throwing games to attract money. Another team completely based its strategy on a shoot the cane game and ran all around the campus attracting huge crowds. While another team coerced a customer into buying a self made Sachin T-shirt for a princely 700 bucks! It sure was fun for all the teams who were each assigned volunteers from the organizers. 3 hours hence the winner had to be decided and BITS-Pilani came out on top making 2010 INR with NMIMS a close second at 1950 INR. What’s more, the teams got to keep the money they made! A wonderful Return of Investment of almost 20 times!

Pranay Sharma, Sayantani Chanda & Rishabh Bhandari from NMIMS Mumbai were declared the eventual winners of Corpostrat based on scores from both the rounds with Kushal Agarwal & Abhishek Kaushik from BITS-Pilani taking second spot. Aniruddha Jhawar, Sitanshu Gupta & Ashish Vaya from IT-BHU, Varanasi took the third spot. The winners took home 12000 INR, the First runners-up took home 8000 INR and the second runners-up, 5000 INR.

All in all, the event lived up to its billing and attracted huge crowds on both the days. The completely new format of Corpostrat seems to be a huge hit and certainly is here to stay for the years to come!

MAGNATE:(27-28th March)
Three rounds of electrifying thoughts and ideas. Participants were screened on their analytical and logical abilities in the first round, which was a written test. The fun started in the second round as they participated in Extempore, which gave the event 7 participants. These 7 participants were then asked to participate in a mock press conference where one by one they assumed the role of a controversial personality and were grilled by the rest of the participants as reporters. Divya Jain and Lekhsmi P of IIT Roorkee secured the first and second positions respectively and Rishabha Garg from AMU secured the third position. The event was judged by Dr. Rajat Agarwal, Dr. Nagendra Kumar, Mrs. Samiksha Jain and Mr. Tapan Susheel from HT. All in all, the event was a great hit.

Department of management studies organised a game simulating the real stock market scenario. The game was named DOMS Stock Exchange (DSE) and attracted a participation of more than 120 teams from all over the country. The USP of the game was that one could trade in the Stock Market through SMS or by calling .The screening was done through a business quiz which included questions mainly from current business affairs and some general topics also, out of the 120 teams that participated in the first round, 40 teams were shortlisted based on their performances in the quiz. Each team was allotted a broker who took their orders and sold or bought the shares for them. The game could also be played though mobile phone as continuous news updates were sent to the teams through SMS. The event saw participation from varied spheres like civil as well as Earth Sciences, not to mention the ever eager Management students who trade in the real stock markets on a regular basis, many teams from other colleges participated and performed exceedingly well.
The concept was appreciated by all the participants and was termed as a great learning experience by those who want to learn trading in real markets.

MIND YOUR BUSINESS (26th-27th March)
Mind Your Business is a business simulation game designed to give a feel of how various functions are linked to each other and how each contribute to the overall success of a company. The first stage of the event was held on 26th and was a simple business quiz to test the basic knowledge of business terms. The event saw close to 100 entries for this round. The best eight teams were chosen to compete in the second stage.  In the second stage each team was provided with a laptop containing the business model simulated on excel. After a brief introduction, the teams were explained the rules of the game. As the day progressed the environment grew fiercer with teams trying to out bid their rivals and gain market share. The winning teams were decided on the size of their asset base. The event was a huge success mainly because of the enthusiasm shown by the participants and the successful coordination by the event coordinators.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Silver Jubilee Alumni Meet: Shaping the Future

It is always an emotional subject for anyone to be back to the roots. And it becomes even more touching when it happens after a long time. DoMS, IIT Roorkee also witnessed it on 24th and 25th November 2012. The occasion was silver jubilee alumni meet, a chance for former students and now industry stalwarts to return to Roorkee after a gap of 25 years. The alumni as well as the institute both were equally jubilant for the moment. Not only these two days gave us a chance to meet them but it also provided an opportunity to listen and learn from these experts. A total of eight eminent personalities gave their views, opinions and thoughts on the topic “Shaping the Future” which has now achieved relevance as never before. The event went on for two days and proved immensely helpful for students to get an insight and understanding of real world business.

Day One: 24-Nov-2012

It was a fine day and the students were eagerly waiting for the occasion. Four distinguished people from industry put forward their vision. Their brief introduction is mentioned below:

Mr. Arvind Mohan Mathur (AM): Mr. Arvind got his engineering degree from IIT Roorkee in 1987. He then joined IIT Delhi and completed his masters in 1990. He earned his doctorate from Michigan State University in 1996. He also holds an MBA degree from New York University - Leonard N. Stern School of Business. He has over 12 yrs of experience in the Pharmaceutical Industry in business management, market access, consulting, strategy and marketing & sales capacities. Currently he is the Head, Hospital/Specialty Business at Novartis.

Mr. Gaurav Saxena (GS): Mr. Gaurav is also passed out from IIT Roorkee in 1987 with a degree in chemical engineering. He has around 25 years of industry experience and currently serving as an AVP at Reliance Industries Limited.

Mr. Siddhartha Guharay (SG): Mr. Siddhartha obtained his chemical engineering degree from IIT Roorkee in 1987. He then joined the University of Missouri-Rolla and completed his masters in 1991. He is having more than 30 years of industry exposure. Currently he is working as Chief Engineer-Process at MottMacDonald Pvt Ltd.

Mr. Mayank Sharma (MS): Mr. Mayank completed his graduation in electronics and communication engineering from IIT Roorkee in1987. He has over 9 years of working experience. Currently he is the VP and Head - Africa Market Unit at Comviva.

As evident, the profiles of the guests were very impressive and everyone was expecting an intellectually satisfying session. The event started with welcoming the alumni by Dr. Rangnekar, our head of department. Then a brief profile of our department was presented to the guests. Then the session started in the form of a panel discussion followed by question and answers. And the summary is given below:

Q: How do you see IIT Roorkee ten years down the line?
SG: Always draw your lesson from the past. Adapt according to the outside world. Visualization of the future plan is very important.
AM: Future is uncertain and it is difficult to see it. However trend is visible for us to see. IIT Roorkee has definitely grown on its reputation. To shape the future, we must have to shape ourselves first. We should also prepare for the change. One should need to focus on learning new things. Based on that capability, future can be shaped. Another key aspect is innovation and this is where we should concentrate and contribute.
GS: Study of the engineering sciences gives us certain tools. But this does not alone guarantee success. One important characteristic is the spirituality quotient. Mr. Gaurav mentioned the Deepak Chopra’s book “The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success”.
MS: One must keep the passion for excellence. If the passion is not present, future can’t be held. The example of the Ganga Canal was cited by Mr. Mayank to show how this passion resulted in an engineering marvel.

Q: What is your idea about entrepreneurship and how one should approach for starting a new business?
AM: Being entrepreneur is the coolest thing. One does not need to get permissions from others to do anything. But entrepreneurship also carries a certain amount of risk and this should not be avoided. Therefore the here comes the Passion, the first ‘P’ of entrepreneurship. Without passion, one can’t get success in anything. One must also focus on the initial five to ten years of the business as they are the most challenging ones.
MS: For every success story, there are hundreds of untold failures. We should still remember the success. Every failure brings more possibility for success. Failure as popularly believed, may not be dramatic. We should be ready for failure and recover from it. Entrepreneurship is deemed to be working independently which on the other hand, is actually working according to many stakeholders like consumers, partners, employee etc.
SG: In an entrepreneurial venture, trust between partners is extremely important factor. Hence the selection of the partner is very important in entrepreneurship. The example of Dhirubai Ambani was quoted to suggest that we should not get too upset by failures. At the end it is the belief which works. Additionally, attitude is a vital factor. Knowledge can be gathered, skills can be developed but attitude one carries with oneself. And that decides the success or failure. Lastly, there is need of the value based education system.
GS: the primary purpose of entrepreneurship is “how to serve better than others”. This is the theme of any business. One should learn about the need, explicit and implicit and act accordingly.

The panel discussion was concluded with this note and now it was the time for questions from the audience.

Q: How conducive is environment for entrepreneurship when compared to 25 years ago?
MS: It is certainly much better. There was no concept of venture capital then. Now a days funding is very easy and environment is positive. One should note that first group most often comes from a near circle such as family, friends etc. Even the big business enterprise capital is actually small funding from some very rich people. The share is low as it carries great risk.

Q: Please tell us about your journey.
AM: After my graduation, I worked for BPCL at Bombay for one year. Then I joined IIT Delhi to pursue my master degree. After my masters, I went on to join Michigan State University for my PhD. I have also got two patents in my name. I also for around 7-8 papers published including one of them in the “Nature”. Later I completed my MBA from New Jersey. One should plan according to the goal. The sooner you know what you want to do, the better focused you are.
SG: After graduation, I worked in Haldia Petrochemicals Limited which has government has stakeholder as well. Generally government organizations are viewed with certain denigration. One should not overlook the status and contribution of PSUs. These PSUs have actually built our nation. There is no dearth of talent either. The fault lies somewhere else. Another point was, an engineer should acquire the hand-on experience. This is required in case of better management even.

These were the questions in front of the guests which were aptly responded. Then a note of thanks was delivered to all our esteemed guests and it marked the end of the day. It was truly an enriching experience for all of us and we were eagerly waiting for the next day.

Day Two: 25-Nov-2012

The second day was even more rewarding to us. Apart from the panel discussion, we also got to listen to two other eminent personalities from industry, Mr. P. Balaji and Mr. Parag Gupta. They spent some valuable time with us and shared their views on a range of topics.

Mr. P. Balaji, VP & MD, Nokia India is an IIT Roorkee alumnus. He got his engineering degree from IIT Roorkee in electronics followed by post graduation in management from IIM Ahmedabad. He has over two decades of experience in IT and Telecom industry working with organizations like Sony, Ericsson, Lucent, AT&T and Tata group. Another great speaker is Mr. Parag Gupta, MD, Vopak India. He also earned his degree in mechanical engineering from IIT Roorkee and did his MBA from IIM Ahmedabad. Mr. Parag also has about twenty years of experience in sales, marketing, business development and general management. These alumni talked about how to gear ourselves for the future, what skill sets one needs to have particularly in entrepreneurial context, a brief yet insightful idea about current industry and also gave valuable advice to students.

After the enriching session, it was the time for discussion on the subject line “Shaping the Future”. This day again saw four eminent personalities from industry. The format was the same, panel discussion succeeded by question and answers. Their brief introductions are as follows:

Mr. Anupam Singh (AS): Mr. Anupam got his engineering degree from IIT Roorkee in computer science in 1987. He completed his masters from PHTO Utrecht, Netherlands in 1991 and also holds an MBA degree from IIT Delhi in 2000. He has more than 20 years of experience in building engineering teams from scratch, leading start-ups as well as large product teams. He is the Co-founder at SharedReach.

Mr. Amit Dayal (AD): Mr. Amit completed his graduation in computer science from IIT Roorkee in 1987. He then joined the University of California and completed his masters in 1989. He has also done MBA from University of California in 2000. He is having more than 20 years of experience and currently working as Vice President Engineering, Yahoo.

Mrs. Shivani Arora (SA): Mrs. Shivani did his graduation in computer science & technology from IIT Roorkee in 1987. She completed his master from IIT Delhi in 1989. She is also an accomplished badminton player. She has over 20 years of experience and is currently working as technical manager at Alcatel Lucent India Ltd.

Mr. Vineet Shukla (VS): Mr. Vineet got his engineering degree in industrial engineering from IIT Roorkee in 1987. He completed his masters from IIT Delhi in 1988. He is having more than 25 years of experience and is currently working as a Program Manager at Tata Technologies Ltd.

In addition to these distinguished speakers the occasion was also graced by other alumni. We had Mr. Alok Mahajan from KPMG, Mr. Sanjay Saxena from HDFC Ergo, Mr. Pradeep Ahluwalia from State Street Corp, Mr. Ravindra Gupta from Man Diesel, Mr. Bhupinder Singh, Mr. G. Srinivas from NPCIL, Mr. Sanjay Keshwani from Dassault System, Mr. Deepak Chawla from ZenPrise, Mr. Deepinder Setia from CONTRAIL System, Mr. Amitabh Diwakar an architect and Mr. Arun Agarwal from Shell. These experts also shared his views with the audiences.

As again, the profiles of the guests were very extraordinary. The event started with welcoming the alumni by Dr. Rangnekar, our head of department. Then these guests were introduced to our department through a presentation. Afterwards the panel discussion began.

Q: How do we shape the future?
AS: Future is actually in our hands. My belief is, the way you can shape the future is by acquiring the entrepreneurial spirit. Passion is a very important factor for the success. Another factor is persistence which is also essential for success. The next factor is ownership. One should remember that ownership is never assigned, it is always acquired.
SA: Basics of communication are very important. Another thing is that we desperately lack planning. We might be good in execution but we must focus on planning part.
VS: We are deciders of our own futures. Vision is really a big thing for shaping the future. Also consistent teamwork is the key for the success. Conviction is significant for success as well. Lastly, knowledge is something which can be acquired but wisdom can’t be.
AD: Technology is the new mantra. Whatever you do, technology will be a part of it. Therefore we should embrace, not go away from technology advantage. Future of technology is around products, not the services. So we have a mindset that we have to build great products.

It was a fruitful dialogue and next was the specific queries round.

Q: With respect to IIT Roorkee, how do we go about i.e., what is the road ahead?
SA: IIT Roorkee has lots more potential than it has today. The major area of focus is planning. People in other countries put a lot of efforts in planning which is not happening in India. Also, a lot of people want to do things for IIT Roorkee but they have time constraints. IIT Roorkee should produce a game plan to go about how to get best results from people who do not have enough time but have the will to contribute.

Q: Apart from passion and persistence, how important is the idea?
AS: Ideas are necessary but converting them into tangible thing is the key. It is therefore more important to spend time thinking. Ideas can’t be generated by sitting at home. Expose yourself to the outside world and learn what is going on around the world.
AD: before any idea, we have to check whether it is required at all. The reason being, if it is not satisfying any need it is not fruitful.

Q: Talking in the context of Indian IT industry, we see a lack of innovation. How we as managers, can mitigate this issue?
AD: Usually a lot of focus is given on services rather than products. However products are the area where there is a lot of scope of innovation. Services generally have optimization rather than true innovation. This has been recognized and there is increased focus on innovation. Now most of the service organizations also operate in product domain.
VS: Today the market is changing which is giving a lot of push for the product development. In the future, we expect to see innovative ideas from this section mainly.
AS: Prima facie, product development provides a comparatively low return on investment to the service provider. People should understand what product development is. Building or creating a product is the easy part. The tough part is to sell it and manage it over the time. But that is where revenues are generated. In comparison, the service industry is a lot easier. However product development is very learning and it adds tremendous value to the person. Organizations always look for a person with significant product development exposure.

Q: What are the must-haves for starting up an entrepreneurial spirit?
AD: the first thing we should look for is, are you solving a problem or it is just for the sake of it. The next important consideration is, do you have the right team.
AS: Finding the right team is like marriage. We need to spend time with a person to evaluate if we can trust the person. It is extremely important. Second, it is not about the idea but the passion about the idea.
SA: One must be ready for the failures. Once we know we can handle it, we can focus on it in a much better way.
VS: Learn to be risk taking. Discipline is very important yet we should also have enough flexibility to take up new challenges. Discipline should not be translated into rigidness.

This was the last query and it marked the end of the session. A note of thank was delivered to all guests. This marked the formal conclusion of the session. Overall, it proved to be a very useful session which would definitely help students in their grooming as future managers and leaders.

Vyan 2012

It was not an ordinary day for Dept of management Studies, IIT Roorkee. This was the day when DoMS conducted two national level competitions, Vicissitude and Evangelist. There was an aura of excitement in the department and the students were even more enthusiastic and thrilled about the occasion. The event saw a large number of participation from colleges across the nation for both contests. Everyone was equally good and it was a challenging job for the judges to choose the best among the best.

Finally the date arrived. It was 19th Nov 2012 when the finals of these two events were scheduled. There was so much excitement in the air that students reached the department before the time!! However apart from the events scheduled, something else was also in store. We were fortunate to listen to Mr. Devesh Singh, an eminent lawyer and a professor in IIFT Delhi. He walked us through the constitution of India, gave an insight of the judicial system of our country and also explained some well-known cases. He also talked about some of the contemporary issues. For management students it was indeed an interesting and satisfying experience to learn about something which is not our domain. The interaction was well received by the students and faculties alike.

The judges had arrived by then and it was the time to begin the show. First our department was introduced to the guests. Jury members were impressed by the diversity, the calibre and strength of our departments and student’s potential. The panel consisted of distinguished experts from industry and academia. All guests were welcomed by our Head of Department Dr. Rangnekar. After that each expert shared their journey and experiences with us. We were benefitted from knowing how these people thought and planned; what challenges they faced and how they overcame them. We also came to know about some of the major challenges faced while starting up a new venture. These suggestions and learning would surely increase our understanding and knowledge. Students were participative in the discussion and posed different set of questions which was answered skilfully by these experts.

After the sessions, the competition began. Vicissitude was scheduled first and then it was the turn for Evangelist. The stage was set and everyone was prepared to see the battle of the brains.

Vicissitude: Don’t Fear Predicament, Plan It

Vicissitude is a national level business plan competition, organized by DoMS, IIT Roorkee. It tests not only business skills but also the vision to see the future. The event saw national level participation and was a huge success. Entries were received from all India colleges. Finally a total of six teams were selected and called on for the final round of presentation. These six teams are listed below:

DoMS IIT Roorkee_Shabd Shiksha Sansthan
IIM Lucknow_Samaksh Kisaan
IIM Calcutta_Paradigm
Great Lakes_Enerture

Each team was allocated 20 minutes for presenting their entrepreneurial idea, showing their business acumen and queries & answers. As teams started coming and started giving their presentations, the excitement level begin to rise. Each was better than the rest and people were indecisive about a particular choice. The eureka moment came when our home team was called for showcasing their idea. There was huge appreciation and support all around and people were cheering up the teams. This presentation went off very well and even earned positive comments from judges. After all teams finished with their presentation, the lunch break was announced.

Evangelist: More than Just a Fairytale

After lunch it was the turn for another show Evangelist. It is a national level engineering project competition. It gives us a platform to mix technology with business i.e. how technology can be converted into a profitable venture. Like Vicissitude, this event also saw a huge participation across the nation. This event saw five finalists as mentioned below:

IIT Roorkee_Team Value Dales Stream Mapping
Ansal Institute_ Piezoelectric Roads
Ansal Institute_ Team Halo Aviators
Team Selcoth

Every team had 15 minutes for presenting their ideas along with question answer session. The teams were well prepared and it became really tough for the judges to decide. This event also had one home team from IIT Roorkee which received home audience support. The round also brought light on the bright future for India in technology and sciences. The potential to transform a technology or a scientific theorem into a real world application was acknowledged and received everyone including panel members.

After both events were over and it was the moment to announce the result. Not only participants but audiences were also having a sense of anticipation. Finally the envelopes were submitted after some half an hour discussion among judges. There was a pin drop silence and everybody was praying for his team.

First it was the turn of Vicissitude participants. The envelopes started to be opened and names begin to pour in. The atmosphere became electrifying when home team Shabd Shikha Sansthan was declared winner. It was another feather in the cap of DoMS cap and there was a sense of pride among the students. A huge round of applause was served for first and second runners which were Tilzmatic and Paradigm respectively.

After Vicissitude it was the time for Evangelist winner’s pronouncement and again silence crept into the atmosphere. It was an even more intense competition and no one was in a position to predict anything. The host started to name the winners. And again it was IIT Roorkee team which won the competition!! IITR has won both events and there was nothing more one could have asked for. It re-established the brand IITR in not only business but also in technology. Appreciation was given to the first runner up, Team halo Aviators. There was a tie between XTECH and Piezoelectric Roads for second runners up position.

However all teams were equally good and admired by the audiences. The event ended with congratulating all winners and a note of thanks delivered by our HoD Dr. Rangnekar. The judges again showed their admiration of DoMS student’s energy and participation. All of us were happy and feeling fortunate to be a part of this. The VYAN was over but the memory will always be there.